Heavy Duty Washable Pet Bed




I have two main problems with store bought pet beds, dog beds in particular since my pet is a Boston terrier. The first is that they are not durable and cheaply made. I have lost count of the number of beds that Lily, my Boston have demolished. She ripped a hole in one bed, pulled the stuffing out, inserted herself inside and took a nap. I had no idea where she was until the bed started moving on it's own. The second problem is when Lily decides to keep the bed around for a while it becomes smelly and need to be washed. Many of the beds are too big and bulky to fit in my washer and when I do manage to cram it in, the washer continuously stops because it is too much weight on one side. The solution to both of my problems was to make my own bed for Lily. To make it durable I decided to make the bed with duck cloth and canvas and to make sure the bed would fit in my washer I decided to make the bed detachable. Basic sewing knowledge is needed (very basic, I'm a sewing class dropout and mostly self taught).

Step 1: Supplies:

Standard size bed pillow

1/2 yard of canvas (black)

2 yards of duck cloth (multi color)

1 yard of hook and loop tape (a.k.a. Velcro)

matching thread

18 inch zipper


1/4 yard polyurethane/polyester water proof diaper cover fabric (optional)

Step 2: Pillow Cover

Measure the size of the pillow. My pillow was 22 inches by 16 inches. I basically made a pillow cover with the zipper along one of the long sides, this side will become the back of the bed. I used the duck cloth for the top of the pillow cover and the canvas for the bottom. I didn't use canvas for the entire cover although it would have been the most durable. The duck cloth is softer and I didn't want Lily to miss any beauty sleep. I attached the water proof fabric to the top inside of the pillow cover just in case of a potty incident. She did pee on a bed in the past before ripping it apart. I also attached strips of the loop side of the Velcro along the perimeter of top outside of the pillow cover where I wanted the bolster placed. I used 12 inches of Velcro on each short side of the cover and one 18 inch strip on the long side (same side as the zipper) of the cover.

Step 3: Bolster

To make the bolster I cut two pieces of the duck cloth 16 inches long (one for each short side of the pillow cover) by 8 inches wide. I wanted the bolster to be 4 inches high for Lily to be able to rest her head. I cut one piece of the duck cloth 22 inches by 8 inches which is for the long side or the back of the bed. I attached the hook side of the Velcro strips along each corresponding piece of fabric to match the loop side strips on the top of the pillow cover. I then attached the pieces of fabric end to end ( 16 inch piece to 22 inch piece to 16 inch piece) to construct the bolster. I left sone short end of the bolster open to stuff with the polyfill then slip stitched it by hand to close it.

Step 4: Construct the Bed

Just line up the Velcro strips on the bolster with the strips on the pillow cover and attach. Now you have a bed fit for a princess (or prince).

Step 5: Enjoy!

Lily loves her bed and not once tried to rip it or pee on it. She sleeps in her bed every night with her favorite blanket. I love it because when it becomes smelly I just detach the bolster from the pillow cover, remove the pillow from its cover and toss it all in the washer.



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    10 Discussions


    3 years ago on Introduction

    LOVE the creative, beautiful creativity of this ! Where did you buy the duck cloth / canvas? I really like that design

    1 reply

    Reply 3 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you so much. I bought the duck cloth, the multi-color fabric, at Ikea and the black canvas at Hancock fabrics.


    3 years ago on Introduction

    I really love the simplicity of this. And to be honest, looks sooo much better then store bought! I imagine it does hold up alot better also.

    I'm going to use your 'ible to attempt a bed for our Australian Shepherd, Daegan.

    But to make it a size comfortable for him, it will have to be 2 bedpillows - which shouldn't be a problem as they can just velcro together!

    If your pillow that you used for your project was a used one (by you) then that's a good reason why Lily loves her new bed! It's pretty, comfortable and smells like her human!

    Good 'ible!! Kudos!

    1 reply

    3 years ago on Introduction

    I hear you, excellent instructable. 8-) I Love Velcro. I have also found small swatches of Scotch brand heavyweight and outdoor...tabs that are similar to what they put our Illinois I-Pass's on the windshield that I hope to use for some projects. Scotch "fasteners"...all-weather looks strong for washing...I am not sure how it will work with cloth, they show it holding up outdoor thermometer, car dash objects...Thanks again! You could easily sell this product, it's so beautiful.

    1 reply

    3 years ago on Introduction

    This looks like an excellent bed, and a perfect solution to your issues with store-bought pet beds. Nicely done!

    1 reply